Fast-growing trees for a shaded Belgian terrace

In the heart of Belgium, as the sun shines bright and the days grow warmer, many homeowners dream of a shaded terrace. A place where they can relax, sip on a refreshing drink, and enjoy the outdoors without the scorching sun. The solution? Planting fast-growing trees that not only enhance the beauty of your property but also provide that much-desired shade. Let’s delve into some of the best options.

shade tree
Fereshteh Ghazisaeedi

1. Weeping Willow (Salix alba ‘Tristis’)

The Weeping Willow, with its romantic drooping branches and lush green leaves, is a popular choice among homeowners. It thrives in sunny spots and rich soils. Its rapid growth rate ensures that you won’t have to wait long for that cooling shade. However, due to its expansive root system, it’s advisable to plant it at a safe distance from buildings and structures.

2. Sterile White Mulberry (Morus alba ‘Fruitless’)

The Sterile White Mulberry is renowned for its generous shade. It grows quickly and is notably drought-resistant. But a word of caution: its robust root system can be problematic if planted too close to buildings.

3. Empress Tree (Paulownia tomentosa)


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This elegant tree, with its abundant foliage, offers dense shade. Its rapid growth and cold resistance make it a top choice for those seeking quick results and a tree that can withstand Belgium’s chilly winters.

4. Stone Pine (Pinus pinea)

Often associated with holidays in the South, this large conifer provides a welcome respite from the sun. Once established, it’s drought-resistant and can handle brief frost periods, making it suitable for various Belgian climates.

5. Norway Maple (Acer platanoides)


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A common sight in Europe, the Norway Maple offers delightful shade with its rounded to pyramidal crown. It’s hardy and has a long lifespan, often living up to two centuries.

6. Canary Island Date Palm (Phoenix canariensis)

For those aiming for a tropical vibe, this palm tree is an excellent choice. It not only provides shade but also adds an exotic touch to your terrace. It’s drought-resistant and can withstand short frost periods.

7. Common Horse Chestnut (Aesculus hippocastanum)


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A classic choice, the Common Horse Chestnut offers dense shade. It grows quickly, reaching impressive heights of up to 25 meters and a spread of 15 to 20 meters.

8. Blue Atlas Cedar (Cedrus libani ‘Atlantica Glauca’)

This large conifer is another great option for those seeking shade. It’s hardy, withstanding temperatures as low as -15°C, and is adaptable to poor and dry soils.

Conclusion: Choosing the Right Tree for Your Terrace

Selecting the right tree for your terrace is crucial. Consider factors like the tree’s growth rate, size, and maintenance requirements. With the right choice, you can transform your sun-drenched terrace into a shaded paradise, perfect for relaxation and outdoor gatherings. As you embark on this green journey, remember that the benefits extend beyond just shade – trees also enhance air quality, increase property value, and contribute to a healthier environment.